With 11th French, Nadal not obsessed with Federer's 20 Slams
Paris: Rafael Nadal's 11th French Open title raised his Grand Slam trophy count to 17, three away from the men's record held by Roger Federer.
That doesn't necessarily mean Nadal is fixated on catching his rival.
"Of course I would love to have 20, like Roger, in the future — or even more," Nadal said on Sunday evening after beating Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 in the final at Roland Garros, "but being honest, (it's) something that is not in my mind."
He added that it's not an "obsession."
"Let me enjoy this title," Nadal said.
"I can't be always thinking of more. Of course, I have ambition. Of course, I have passion for what I am doing. But I never have been crazy about all this kind of stuff. No, you can't be frustrated always if somebody has more money than you, if somebody have a bigger house than you, if somebody have more Grand Slams than you. You can't live with that feeling, no?"
Nadal's uncle, Toni, who used to also be his coach, attended Sunday's match and was asked afterward whether Rafael can pull even with Federer. "I want to think that is possible," Toni said. "But I know (that) maybe in one month, Federer will win again Wimbledon." Federer, of course, sat out the French Open to rest and prepare for the grass-court season. He did the same a year ago, and then went on to claim his record eighth championship at the All England Club, where play begins July 2.
The only man with more titles at a single major is Nadal in Paris. He is now 86-2 at the French Open — and, by the looks of things, as good as ever at the place.
When Nadal broke down in tears on the Roland Garros podium on Sunday as 15,000 people, plus a smattering of Hollywood heavyweights, stood and honoured his staggering 11th French Open triumph, it was enough to make his desperate rivals weep.
The 32-year-old Spaniard had wrapped up his 17th major, taken his career earnings beyond the $100 million mark and extended his record in Paris to 86 wins and just two defeats. It also intensified the headache facing tennis' highly-rated but woefully under-performing next generation.
How do you solve a problem like Nadal? Or Roger Federer or Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray for that matter? Since Nadal won his first major at Roland Garros in 2005, the 'Big Four' have claimed 48 of the past 53 Grand Slam titles.
In their careers, 36-year-old Federer has 20 majors, Nadal 17, Djokovic 12 and Murray three. Stan Wawrinka, it should not be forgotten, also has three Slams although his name is usually an absentee when
it comes to such number-crunching.